Certified Life Coach and Counsellor
With the start of matric exams; it can be a very stressful time for learners. Exam stress can start when you feel you can’t cope with revision, or feel pressure from your school or family.
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You might worry you’re going to fail or you won’t get the A’s you need for university or a job you want.
It can seem scary to talk about stress or anxiety. You might feel like nobody else is feeling this way.
But bottling up stress and trying to deal with it on your own can often make the stress worse.
So it can really help to talk. When we feel anxious, we often give ourselves negative messages like: ‘I can’t do this’, ‘I’m useless’ and ‘I’m going to fail’.
It can be difficult but try to replace these with positive thoughts such as: ‘this is just anxiety, it can’t harm me’ and, ‘relax, concentrate – it’s going to be okay’.
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Picturing how you’d like things to go can help you feel more positive. Try to imagine yourself turning up for an exam feeling confident and relaxed.
It can sometimes feel like your whole future depends on what grades you get. There can be a lot of pressure on young people to do well in exams which can cause a lot of stress and anxiety. Talking to someone you trust like a friend, educator or family member could help.
They might not be aware of how their attitude towards your exams is putting pressure on you. Talking about how you’re feeling can reduce the pressure and help you to feel more in control.
Try these tips to help prepare the night before an exam:
• Don’t go to bed late: You need a good night’s rest
• Look after yourself: Have a healthy meal before you leave.
• Re-read your notes: Write down five things you want to remember for your exam and then leave it at that.
• Have a laugh: Chat to someone who makes you giggle. It can loosen you up and make you feel a little less stressed, which can only be a good thing.
• Set an alarm: Make sure you wake on time in the morning.